• 1 University of Malaya
  • 2 Universiti Tun Abdul Razak


Background: Some argue that Malaysia’s extremely low
organ donation rate is attributed to religion, specifically
Islam. Testing this argument, this study asked Malaysian
Muslims their views regarding various issues on organ
donation and examined whether their decisions to
donate organs are framed by religious beliefs.
Materials and Methods: This study investigated the
perspectives of Malaysian Muslims between October
and December 2013 in Kuala Lumpur. Self-administered
questionnaires were distributed to 900 people, with 829
responses collected (92% response rate). Respondents’
verbal consent was taken before proceeding with the
Results: The survey found that more than half of
respondents felt that organ donation is permitted in
Islam and that it is a communal responsibility. However,
the same proportions were unsure on the issues of rewards
for organs or on whether Islam permits the procuring of
organs from brain dead patients.
Conclusions: Malaysian Muslims are not against organ
donation; however, encouraging organ donation requires
the state to address public concerns on Islam’s views on
this sensitive issue through effective policy tools to help
address these gaps in Malaysian Muslims’ understanding
of organ donation. The organ donation rate could
improve by using Islamic scholars as ambassadors for an
organ donation drive to convey the message of Malaysia’s
urgent need for organ donation.